Gender, Poverty, and Social Policy Regimes: A Comparative Analysis of Twenty-Four Upper-Income Countries (Draft)

Although all industrialized countries have enacted public policies that place a floor under household resources and/or redistribute income from higher to lower income families, none have entirely eradicated income poverty. A substantial research literature on poverty in rich countries has reached two over-arching conclusions. One is that the prevalence and intensity of poverty varies markedly across relatively similar countries, due at least in part to variation in social policy designs. The second is that, within all countries, poverty outcomes vary extensively across subgroups. In this paper, we examine one widely recognized factor associated with poverty – gender. Specifically, we focus on the question: How does gender as a poverty risk factor vary across a group of 24 upper-income countries?